On this day 39 years ago, Team India won their first ODI World Cup title by defeating the much-fancied West Indies in the 1983 final. The Kapil Dev-led outfit’s win at the Lord’s changed the face of Indian cricket.
While cricket became a national obsession, it also compelled the rest of the world to believe that Asian teams are capable of winning the World title.
West Indies, England and Australia were the pre-tournament favourites. And India defied the odds by winning the prestigious title while defeating England and West Indies at the semi-final and final respectively.
India met Australia and West Indies twice at the Group stage and they recorded one win and one loss each against the two heavyweights. However, their most memorable and series defining win came in the quarterfinal, when they defeated Zimbabwe by 31 runs, courtesy of a Kapil Dev special.
West Indies were overwhelming favourites against India in the final though.
Put in to bat first, India’s start was not great as they lost star opener Sunil Gavaskar for just two runs. And after that, Kris Srikkanth (38 runs off 57 balls) and Mohinder Amarnath (26 runs off 80 balls) played some decent cricket to take India’s innings forward. However, their dismissal led to a batting collapse as India were bowled out for 183 in 54.4 overs.
Other than Srikkanth and Amarnath, Sandeep Patil was the only player to cross the 20 run-mark. He scored 27 runs off 29 deliveries and was India’s second-highest run-getter in the match behind Srikkanth.
Though 183 wasn’t an imposing target, especially against two-time defending champions West Indies, which had the likes of Desmond Haynes, Vivian Richards and Clive Lloyd in their line-up.
However, India did the impossible by bowling out West Indies for 142 in 52 overs and win the contest by 43 runs.
For India, Mohinder Amarnath and Madan Lal picked three wickets each.
Balwinder Sandhu scalped two wickets while Kapil and Roger Binny picked one wicket each. That win is widely accepted to have revolutionised cricket in India and the rest, as they say, is history.
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